Community members bring concern of possible Jefferson Co. school closure to board

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JEFFERSON COUNTY, Tenn. (WATE) — Discussions continued Thursday night around a hot topic in Jefferson County: the possibility of closing Rush Strong School.

Parents and members of the community have expressed concern over the idea, and they continued to make their voices heard at Thursday’s school board meeting.

Several scenarios for how to move forward are being tossed around, but there’s one that took center stage at the meeting, and it’s the one that has parents and students most concerned.

It involves consolidating Piedmont Elementary and Rush Strong School into one building. Several people, including parents and students, took the podium to show their opposition to it.

“If the school board wants what’s good for the students, listen to what we need. Taking away Rush Strong is like tearing a family apart,” said one attendee.

“The board is trying to weed through all that process, a lot of numbers to look at, a lot of options to go over and scenarios, and trying to decide what’s best. I’m sure, confident they’ll take their time and try to put together a plan that helps everyone in Jefferson County,” said Director of Schools Shane Johnston.

A parent attending the meeting told us afterward, he still has hope.

This is not a proposal or recommendation at this time. Thursday’s meeting was simply a discussion, and the Director of Schools said the school board still needs to gather more information to decide which scenario to move forward with.

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